Tissue factor activity of small and large extracellular vesicles in different diseases

Ana T. A. Sachetto, Sierra J. Archibald, Yohei Hisada, Axel Rosell, Sebastian Havervall, Nick van Es, Rienk Nieuwland, Robert A. Campbell, Elizabeth A. Middleton, Matthew T. Rondina, Charlotte Thålin, Nigel Mackman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Background: Circulating procoagulant extracellular vesicles (EVs) are increased in diseases, such as cancer, sepsis, and COVID-19. EV tissue factor (TF) activity is associated with disseminated intravascular coagulation in sepsis and venous thrombosis in patients with pancreatic cancer and COVID-19. EVs are commonly isolated by centrifugation at ∼20,000 g. Objectives: In this study, we analyzed the TF activity of 2 EV populations enriched for large and small EVs in patients with either sepsis, pancreatic cancer, or COVID-19. Methods: EVs were isolated from plasma by sequential centrifugation at 20,000 g (large EVs, LEVs) and then 100,000 g (small EVs, SEVs). We analyzed EVs from plasma prepared from whole blood samples from healthy individuals with or without lipopolysaccharide (LPS) stimulation as well as EVs from plasma samples from patients with either sepsis, pancreatic cancer, or COVID-19. TF-dependent (EV-TF activity) and TF-independent factor Xa (FXa) generation of the EVs was measured. Results: LPS increased EV-TF activity in LEVs but not SEVs. Similarly, in 2 patients with sepsis who had EV-TF activity above the background of the assay we observed EV-TF activity in LEVs but not SEVs. Patients with pancreatic cancer or COVID-19 had circulating EV-TF activity in both LEVs and SEVs. Conclusion: We recommend that EVs are isolated from plasma from patients by centrifugation at 100,000 g rather than 20,000 g to obtain a more accurate measure of levels of circulating EV-TF activity.
Original languageEnglish
Article number100124
JournalResearch and practice in thrombosis and haemostasis
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2023


  • COVID-19
  • cancer
  • extracellular vesicles
  • procoagulant activity
  • sepsis
  • tissue factor

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